- Instacart has named a pair of technology executives to its board of directors as it continues to add high-profile talent to its senior ranks, the e-commerce company announced Wednesday. The new directors are Fidji Simo, who runs the team behind Facebook’s app, and Barry McCarthy, former chief financial officer for Spotify and Netflix.
- The appointments of Simo and McCarthy to Instacart’s board follow the company’s recent addition of a new chief operating officer, chief financial officer, chief human resources officer, senior vice president of product and vice president of finance. All of those new officials also have technology backgrounds.
- Propelled by a tailwind of pandemic-driven business that has solidified its front-runner status in grocery e-commerce, Instacart is bulking up on executives with top-tier management experience as it builds momentum ahead of a widely expected initial public offering.
Instacart’s latest boardroom additions underscore the priority the company has placed on sharpening its ability to raise money and its stature as a public-facing technology innovator.
McCarthy, who served as CFO of Netflix and Spotify when each of those companies went public, could prove especially influential as Instacart reportedly prepares for an IPO that could value it at $30 billion.
According to Recode, the financial executive is credited with developing a method to take a company public without selling any new shares and allowing investors to determine its share price. Spotify employed that technique, known as a direct listing, when the Swedish music streaming service started trading on the New York Stock Exchange in 2018, as did business communication software provider Slack the following year.
In a move that could supercharge McCarthy’s value to Instacart, the company in January hired an experienced IPO specialist at Goldman Sachs as its chief financial officer. That executive, Nick Giovanni, worked on several multi billion-dollar transactions, including Slack’s agreement in December to be acquired by Salesforce.
Instacart’s decision to name Simo to its board, meanwhile, ties into the company’s ongoing efforts to improve its suite of digital tools, including its app and products used by delivery drivers, retailers and CPG companies. As head of Facebook App, Simo leads development efforts and strategy for the social network’s widely used mobile interface, including features such as News Feed, Stories, Video and Groups.
Simo is also co-founder of Women in Product, a California-based non-profit organization that helps women attain positions of leadership in product management.
“Instacart has been a lifeline for my family this past year and I look forward to being part of its journey,” Simo said on Twitter.
Simo’s appointment follows Instacart’s appointment earlier this month of another Facebook executive, Asha Sharma, as COO. At Facebook, Sharma served as vice president of product for the company’s private communications services.
Simo and McCarthy join Instacart Founder and CEO Apoorva Mehta on the e-commerce company’s board. Officials of investment firms D1 Capital Partners, Sequoia Capital and Andreessen Horowitz — all companies that have invested in Instacart — also serve on the board of directors.
Separately, Instacart recently raised its service fee by an unspecified amount for customers in California to pay for new benefits for its on-demand workers in the state stemming from the passage last year of Proposition 22, the company said in a statement. The increase, which The San Francisco Chronicle reported pushes Instacart’s service fee in California from 5% to 8%, does not apply to customers in the company’s Express program.
Instacart was among the companies that supported the ballot measure, which exempts third-party delivery platforms from a state law that requires businesses to reclassify contractors as employees.